Last night around 2, my phone – along with thousands of others – sounded an alarm and displayed a Wireless Emergency Alert for flash flooding in Buncombe county, NC. We are well out of the flood plain, so I decided to get back to sleep. That took awhile, so the interruption was not welcome.
This morning I was reminded about the importance of such warnings. One of our news monitoring tools showed a recently published academic paper that discussed the results of flash flooding in Russia in 2012. Over 5,000 homes were lost and 172 people died. The paper traced many of the deaths to the lack of an effective emergency notification system to get people evacuated in time. Of course, we’ve had our own huge flooding here in the U.S., such as the torrential rains and flooding in Texas this spring.
The local news described some rescues that were required last night and some road closures, but no deaths. And more rain is expected tomorrow.
I’ll get over my irritation and be grateful that most communities in the US have good emergency alert systems.